It’s a bit early to start prognosticating who will win next year’s title and possibly dethrone our Kentucky boys as reigning champs, but some folks are already on top of their game. Las Vegas books have already set some team odds to win the 2013 NCAA title. And according to these odds, the 2013 Wildcats have a pretty good chance of making sure the title stays right where in belongs — in Lexington. Let’s take a look at some of the odds via one on-line Vegas book (h/t here):
- Indiana — 7/1
- Louisville — 8/1
- Kentucky — 10/1
- Duke, North Carolina, UCLA, and Florida — 15/1
Personally, I really, really like Kentucky’s chances. Call me biased, but the level of talent coming is strong enough to make up for lack of upperclassmen experience (yet again). Wiltjer will be able to put up points in a crafty fashion and Ryan Harrow will be a step-ahead of any other point guard making a debut for his team. Throw in Noel’s raw athletic ability and defensive presence, the strong and balanced scoring of Alex Poythress, the overall fantastic game of Archie Goodwin, and the possibly undervalued Willie Cauley-Stein, and there’s a lot to be excited about. I’d throw down some Monopoly cash on the Cats at 10/1, but I’d be a lot more generous with my money if it bounced up to 15/1 or 20/1.
As far as Louisville and Indiana are concerned – I get it. They do have solid teams coming that are combined with great new talent. It should be interesting to see how the ‘teams’ develop into a cohesive group and what htey are capable of, but I think the parity of next season could rival that of the 2010-2011 UK season, which ended in a Final Four for Kentucky that they very easily could have come out of as champions.
The rest of the teams are a lot of ‘ehhhh’. I don’t see UCLA being great (Kyle Anderson’s slow-roll type game will be neutralized by great defenders; Shabazz will eat up shot attempts and make it hard to beat good defensive teams who make you value each possession). One writer mentioned Tennessee as a value bet at 50/1. This picture makes you think different. Tobias Harris looks like a Koopa Troopa off the live-action Super Mario Bros. movie.
Let’s all buy our tickets to the 2013 Final Four at the Georgia Dome in ATL early, because it’s happening. Right?
(obligatory disclaimer: Kentucky Sports Radio does not support gambling, unless we’re taking bets on how long Pete Thamel lasts at NYT).
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